Yoda's knowledge of the darkside

Discussion in 'Classic Trilogy' started by Obi-WanLeroy, Jan 24, 2003.

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  1. Master Salty Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 18, 1999
    star 6
    I've never looked at Luke as a Light Side Jedi. I look at Luke as the complete Jedi. Within him is the ability to use both sides, which to me is more realistic. I've never bought into the whole "it will forever dominate your destiny" nonsense.
  2. MeBeJedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2002
    star 6
    "They just wouldn't be able to restart the Jedi order."

    Would the Force prevent them? If that were so, why didn't it "prevent" Palpatine?
  3. Dark Lady Mara Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 19, 1999
    star 7
    Probably because they weren't well enough trained? Luke was probably on Dagobah for a few months at most. All he got was a crash course in Jedihood. He learned what he needed to know to play his part in the grand scheme of things, but because he didn't have a padawanship he didn't learn a number of Jedi skills that are just as important as moving rocks, like negotiating and meditating. So in that sense, he isn't capable of passing on the full Jedi legacy.
  4. MeBeJedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2002
    star 6
    "He learned what he needed to know to play his part in the grand scheme of things, but because he didn't have a padawanship he didn't learn a number of Jedi skills that are just as important as moving rocks, like negotiating and meditating. So in that sense, he isn't capable of passing on the full Jedi legacy."

    Ahhh, I think you're skating on thin ice here. Ever hear of the saying "you know just enough to be dangerous"? I would argue that less knowledge could actually be worse, like a child unknowingly playing with a handgun. If it were this important to the Force, then the Force should just "disallow" its use in this regard. I don't think the Force has this level of interaction, since it "obeys your commands." You seem to imply a fairly high level of sentience.

    Remember that the Force acts according to the tenets of George Lucas' imagination, not real-world physics. I think the Force simply reacted to the over-abundance of Dark-Side usage in conjunction with the very real possibility of taking over the galaxy. Sure, there have been other Sith, but none have ever been in the position that Palpatine was in. Surely, he was potentially the most dangerous Sith to have ever lived, having destroyed whole planets (which tends to wreak havok with the Force, as Obi-wan pointed out.) and laying waste to a galactic government.

    Hell, Palpatine even "turned" Anakin, the very tool created by the Force to stop him. What's not to fear? ;)

    [EDIT] I would even go so far as to say that your theory would make more sense if Luke and Leia were also killed, definitely preventing the misuse of the Force. Otherwise, Nah. :p
  5. YomminCarr Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jan 13, 2003
    It really is interesting that the discovery of Anakin does coincide exactly with the rise of the emporer. Obviously Anakin is a focal point.

    Dark Lady Mara pointed out that Qui-Gon mentioned that he had encountered a vergence in the force. And Mace's response asked if it was a person or thing. QG's counter response makes it evident that he believes that Anakin is the vergence point.

    The word vergence has an interesting definition: The convergence or divergence of light rays to or from a point of intersection.

    When you think about the property of light rays in relation to a camera, you realize that when the rays travel through the focal point, the image forms on the film upside down!

    So there is a switching of positions at the focal, or vergence point. So I think that Qui-Gon believed that the balance of power would tilt or switch and that Anakin would be the catalyst for that switching of power from the light to the dark side. I think that Qui-Gon struggled with this because he also believed that Anakin was the Chosen One. So in a way, he ignored this point and was blinded by the reprecussions of training Anakin to fulfill the prophesy, not wanting to believe that a switching would have to take place before balance could be restored. That is why OB1 told Qui-Gon "He's dangerous. Everyone can sense it. Why can't you?"

    Obviously, at the time that QG found Anakin, they were still converging on to that vergence point. Yoda senses this and has realized that QG was correct. The powers of the Jedi are diminishing the closer they get to the vergence point. And, the exact time of Anakin's corruptiong to the dark side IS the vergence point. After that, you begin to diverge from the vergence point, signifying a time when the power of the dark side will continue to grow as Anakin destroy's the Jedi order and Palp becomes the Emporer and gains control of the galaxy.

    So, when we are talking about Yoda's knowledge of the dark side, this is exactly what he is contemplating. Every time Anakin uses some negative rage-like emotions (like when he sliced and diced the Tuskens and when he argued with OB1 on the transport to go back and get Padme who had fallen out), you next see Yoda *sensing* Anakin's feelings and saying "hmmm..." He is contemplating how Anakin could really be that vergence point and, if so, how he could really fulfill his role as the Chosen One. Heck, he may even know most of Palp's role in things but realizes he can do nothing to stop events from unfolding.

    (thin ice)... It might even explain in EPIII why Yoda goes into hiding instead of confronting and killing Anakin. If he is indeed the vergence point, Yoda probably realizes that he will be the vergence point again in the future, especially if he really is the Chosen One. So he realizes that he is powerless to forceably halt the rise of the dark side as he is powerless to forceably change it in the future. Everything centers around Anakin and he must be patient to see how it all plays out. Yoda goes into hiding to await the fulfilling of the prophesy.
  6. MeBeJedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2002
    star 6
    " (thin ice)... It might even explain in EPIII why Yoda goes into hiding instead of confronting and killing Anakin. If he is indeed the vergence point, Yoda probably realizes that he will be the vergence point again in the future, especially if he really is the Chosen One. So he realizes that he is powerless to forceably halt the rise of the dark side as he is powerless to forceably change it in the future. Everything centers around Anakin and he must be patient to see how it all plays out. Yoda goes into hiding to await the fulfilling of the prophesy."

    This is not a bad theory. It's been discussed in many threads that there needn't be one single path to the fulfillment of the Prophecy, (otherwise, all the characters are simply marionettes of the Force) and you put a nice touch on that. :)
  7. Dark Lady Mara Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 19, 1999
    star 7
    //gives thread a shock to jolt it back to life

    :D

    I would even go so far as to say that your theory would make more sense if Luke and Leia were also killed, definitely preventing the misuse of the Force. Otherwise, Nah.

    I think the state Luke and Leia were in did pretty well prevent future misuse of the Force. Luke didn't know how to Force choke, produce lightning, use the dark side to crush people's bladders, etc., and there was no one left for him to learn from. Sure, he showed in RotJ that it was still possible for him to give into his anger and act in rage, but the only thing he could do while in that state was swing his lightsaber around wildly. Maybe there was potential for evil in Luke (and anyone else he might have trained afterwards), but there wasn't enough of the Sith legacy left for it to carry on.

    I think of the fulfillment of the prophesy as like the fulfillment of the Messianic prophesies. After the Messiah shows up on the scene, there isn't supposed to be any more war or violence. In short, things would be very boring. ;)
  8. RKMeibalane Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 20, 2002
    star 2
    Thanks, Mara for bringing this thread back.

    Taking this in another direction, it is interesting to think about what Yoda might have been doing during his time on Dagobah. Because of the presnce of the "Dark Side cave," his existence was masked. He would have been free to meditate and use his powers without risking detection.

    I think it's safe to assume that Yoda was, at some level, aware of what Vader and Palpatine were up to, even though he wasn't physically present for any events that occured between the trilogies. In ESB, Yoda says that he has watched Luke for a long time, which gives one the impression that he could observe other Force-users from a distance. I wonder if he ever attempted to gain an advantage over his enemies by probing their thoughts. Palpatine may have been difficult to probe, because he was completely closed off from the Light Side of the Force, but Vader's mind should have been accessable to Yoda.
  9. MeBeJedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2002
    star 6
    "Luke didn't know how to Force choke, produce lightning, use the dark side to crush people's bladders"

    The fact that he didn't use these powers doesn't prove he was unaware of how to conjure them. Besides, Luke Force-choked the gamorrean guards, so how is that any different from squeezing one's bladder? ;)

    Besides, I love how people argue Sith powers over Jedi powers. The Jedi aren't unaware of these powers, they simply choose not to use them. Powers that are not used for knowledge or defense lead one to the Dark Side.

    A good example is when Anakin "floats" some fruit to Padme. He says Yoda would be mad at him for it. Now, why is floating some fruit considered bad?

    Because it is a misuse of power. It's unnecessary and wasteful, and doesn't aide one in terms of knowledge or defense, despite the fact that Anakin isn't "attacking" Padme with the fruit. (Thoughts of "9 and 1/2 weeks" suddenly flew through my mind. :D )

    The ROTJ novelization makes a stunning point. When Palpatine strikes Luke with lightning, Luke is actually able to repel some of the lightning.

    "Palpatine raised his spidery arms toward Luke: blinding white bolts of energy coruscated from his fingers, shot across the room like sorcerous lightning, and tore through the boy's insides, looking for ground. The young Jedi was at once confounded and in agony-he'd never heard of such a power, such a corruption of the Force, let alone experienced it.

    But if it was Force-generated, it could be Force-repelled. Luke raised his arms to deflect the bolts. Initially, he was successful-the lightning rebounded from his touch, harmlessly into the walls. Soon, though, the shocks came with such speed and power, they coursed over and into him, and he could only shrink before them, convulsed with pain, his knees buckling, his powers at ebb."


    All uses of the Force are very similar - you are manipulating the energy that exists between all living things ("..the rock, the tree") How you manipulate it is what makes the difference. This would explain why Obi-wan was able to block Dooku's lightning after seeing it used against Anakin. Even if he'd never seen it before, he was able to understand or recognize some important aspect of it, enough so as to be able to repel it. Yoda, being more much in tune with the Force, was able to directly accept, manipulate, and redirect it.

    All Force-users are capable of all Force powers (pushing, pulling, squeezing, fortune-telling, lightning manipulation, etc.), though some will obviously be more capable than others, depending on their training and experience. What makes the Dark Side more powerful is that Dark-siders freely choose to use all the powers, and use them for attack. Light-siders limit themselves to "beneficial" powers, and use those few powers judiciously. This has been a staple of many films showing the contrast between good and bad guys. Bad guys will do whatever it takes to achieve their goals, and good guys will only fire when fired upon, in self-defense, even though both characters have a gun in their hands. The Force is simply another tool, which like any tool, can be used for good or evil. It is the use of this tool that demonstrates what kind of an individual you are.

    "Maybe there was potential for evil in Luke (and anyone else he might have trained afterwards), but there wasn't enough of the Sith legacy left for it to carry on."

    But Luke and the galaxy saw firsthand what misuse of the Force could lead to. It is this lesson that he can impress onto future Jedi, so that they don't fall into the complacency that fell upon them in the PT.
  10. Dark Lady Mara Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 19, 1999
    star 7
    Oof. I forgot about Luke choking Jabba's guards. You're right, of course - the intention with which power is used is more important than the act itself. I don't think you can say the act is irrelevant, though. I can think of few scenarios in which it would have been acceptable for Luke to choke the guards.

    In ESB, Yoda says that he has watched Luke for a long time, which gives one the impression that he could observe other Force-users from a distance. I wonder if he ever attempted to gain an advantage over his enemies by probing their thoughts.

    I can't imagine this, because it seems to me Yoda would have had to be passive to escape detection by Palpy and Vader. If Yoda were quietly observing Luke, he might have been able to avoid their notice, but if he were actively probing their minds, I'm sure they would have noticed. Besides, passivity is a cornerstone of the light side.

    This leads into another point. Does anyone else think Yoda comes exceptionally close to the dark side for a Jedi? If spreading lies and deceit is the way of the dark side, Yoda went pretty dark side on Luke both when he first met him and when he held back the truth about Vader. MBJ will probably pipe up now and say Yoda's intent was good, so the act is excusable, but I think Yoda would have had a comparable chance of making a decent Jedi of Luke whether he told him the truth or not. Yoda lied more for his own security than anything else, and that's why it bothers me.
  11. MeBeJedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2002
    star 6
    //piping up :p

    "Oof. I forgot about Luke choking Jabba's guards."

    Gotcha! [face_devil] Actually most people either forget it, or don't catch it in the first place. (Some even refuse to believe it. :eek: )

    "I can think of few scenarios in which it would have been acceptable for Luke to choke the guards."

    Yeah, and I know a few other things you have thought of, also. I ain't buying that. :p

    Luke could have simply Force-pushed them away. He was showing off throughout the beginning of ROTJ, pure and simple. Don't forget about Luke does what?! and your very own Luke's fleeing the wampa cave was idiotic. ;)

    "I can't imagine this, because it seems to me Yoda would have had to be passive to escape detection by Palpy and Vader. If Yoda were quietly observing Luke, he might have been able to avoid their notice, but if he were actively probing their minds, I'm sure they would have noticed. Besides, passivity is a cornerstone of the light side."

    You assume he was watching Luke in real time. Yoda gives us a hint...

    "Good. Calm, yes. Through the Force, things you will see. Other places. The future... the past. Old friends long gone."

    I don't think it was a question of mind-probing, else he would have done it on Dagobah rather than ask Obi-wan "Will he finish what he's started?"

    Yoda can also see Luke in the past and the future. In fact, we really don't know how much control Yoda or any Jedi has concerning how far or back one sees. Regardless, Yoda certainly had plenty of time to get a pretty good idea about where Luke was and what he was doing. ;)

    "Does anyone else think Yoda comes exceptionally close to the dark side for a Jedi? If spreading lies and deceit is the way of the dark side, Yoda went pretty dark side on Luke both when he first met him and when he held back the truth about Vader. MBJ will probably pipe up now and say Yoda's intent was good, so the act is excusable."

    I've got a better explanation than that: Yoda didn't use the Dark Side when he lied. Lying doesn't involve use of the Force, so how can it lead to the Dark Side? Now, had Yoda used a Jedi Mind-trick to get Luke to kill Vader, then I'd agree with you. Otherwise, there's really no harm done, Force-wise.

    Besides, exactly when did Yoda "lie"? ;)
  12. Dark Lady Mara Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 19, 1999
    star 7
    Luke could have simply Force-pushed them away.

    And they reacted to this by grabbing their throats? ;)

    Lying doesn't involve use of the Force, so how can it lead to the Dark Side? Now, had Yoda used a Jedi Mind-trick to get Luke to kill Vader, then I'd agree with you. Otherwise, there's really no harm done, Force-wise.

    Yoda's intentionally misleading Luke is still something Yoda does while in the role of Luke's teacher, and I think that makes the act plenty damaging. Being a Jedi isn't a part-time job. They're basically monks. They're not allowed to turn their monk-ness off periodically when it doesn't suit them! :p

    I think you're treading on thin ice by claiming it's okay for a Jedi to disobey the teachings of the light side as long as they're not using the Force to do it. The amount of waking time spent using the Force should in theory be very low for a Jedi, especially one like Yoda who wants to stay in hiding. He doesn't use the Force to make the bed, put on the coffee, etc. He does day-to-day things without using the Force when possible. By your reasoning, it would be fine for Yoda to murder people as long as he did it during a time when he wasn't using the Force.
  13. MeBeJedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2002
    star 6
    "I think you're treading on thin ice by claiming it's okay for a Jedi to disobey the teachings of the light side as long as they're not using the Force to do it."

    "By your reasoning, it would be fine for Yoda to murder people as long as he did it during a time when he wasn't using the Force."


    Such an extreme. :p

    Remember that desperate times call for desperate measures, and a white lie (or omission) told in the process of saving the galaxy seems a small price to pay.

    Besides, Obi-wan (and maybe Yoda) wanted Luke to confront, if not kill, Vader, so your scenario is half-right. ;)

    (Honestly, though. Killing someone, even without using the Force, dimishes the Force, since it flows from all living things. Tarkin didn't use the Force when he destroyed Alderaan, yet there was a huge "disturbance" in the Force. Any act that goes against life goes against the Force.)
  14. Dark Lady Mara Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 19, 1999
    star 7
    Remember that desperate times call for desperate measures, and a white lie (or omission) told in the process of saving the galaxy seems a small price to pay.

    Ack! Are you sure you're not a little "darker" than you'd like to admit, Jedi? ;)

    The very same thing could have been said about Palpatine's rise to power. He deceived the galaxy because he could ostensibly have been making things better for them by giving himself absolute power. In fact, I think you could say Palpy improved the galaxy, because totalitarian as he was, he did increase security and order. Suddenly there are no more slaves on the outer rim, and that's a good change.

    The light side and the dark side are actually quite similar when you examine them this closely. For example, after Palpy was destroyed, Luke and his friends created their own oligarchic government to take the place of the Empire. I'm not even talking EU now; I think you can comfortably conclude this from the movies alone given that the Rebellion already had a command structure ready to drop into place. The only major difference between their actions is whether Lucas tells us they're supposed to be good or bad.
  15. MeBeJedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2002
    star 6
    "The very same thing could have been said about Palpatine's rise to power. He deceived the galaxy because he could ostensibly have been making things better for them by giving himself absolute power. In fact, I think you could say Palpy improved the galaxy, because totalitarian as he was, he did increase security and order. Suddenly there are no more slaves on the outer rim, and that's a good change."

    But he was willing to destroy peaceful planets to do so. You put this on the same level as telling a lie? ?[face_plain]

    "Luke and his friends created their own oligarchic government to take the place of the Empire. I'm not even talking EU now; I think you can comfortably conclude this from the movies alone given that the Rebellion already had a command structure ready to drop into place."

    Some assumption. What's to keep them from going back to their original form of government? Sure, it had its problems, but what form of government doesn't? It was the actions of the people in the government, rather than the form itself, that allowed it to be taken over (not to mention the fact that Sid controlled several Senators on top of the ones that were already corrupt.) At least they'll not repeat the same mistakes for a long time (say, the next thousand years.)

    This isn't the first time they've replaced a government. This happens from time to time, even in a fantasy film. ;)
  16. RKMeibalane Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 20, 2002
    star 2
    Mara, you just touched on a key element that I feel is often overlooked when considering movies, especially those that were written in a historical context. George Lucas wrote Star Wars, intending for it to be like an animated history book of sorts, telling the story of people who lived "a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far way." The thing people frequently forget is that history books are written by the victors.

    The Rebel Alliance defeated the Empire, so they had the priviledge of recounting the events that took place during the Star Wars saga. From their perspective, everything the Empire did was bad, because they opposed the Rebellion at every turn. Yet little or nothing is said about any atrocities committed by Rebels themselves.

    In each of the films, we see the Empire committ several horrible crimes. We see Darth Vader executing officers for mistakes, and we see a galaxy being crushed by the weight of the Imperial war machine. But how much of this information was twisted because the Rebels were supposed to look like the good guys?
  17. FleetAdmiralWolf Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jul 1, 2003
    From my opinion I always looked at it that the Galactic Empire were the good guys. They held more control over the Galaxy than any other government before them it seems. With that total control came peace since there would be no fighting. Its not like the Empire was marching people off into death camps. You have to remember that the acts committed by the Empire were to crush the rebellion, and once the rebels are gone, the Galaxy returns to peace and order is restored.

    If you have some free time, look at this web-page and it might change your views on the Rebel Alliance a bit.

    http://www.galacticempiredatabank.com/RebProLies.html
  18. MeBeJedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2002
    star 6
  19. Dark Lady Mara Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 19, 1999
    star 7
    Yeah, we've seen that before. It's one of my favorite threads, in fact. :D

    The Rebel Alliance defeated the Empire, so they had the priviledge of recounting the events that took place during the Star Wars saga. From their perspective, everything the Empire did was bad, because they opposed the Rebellion at every turn. Yet little or nothing is said about any atrocities committed by Rebels themselves.

    Nicely said. :) It's also easy to overlook the fact that since most events are recounted specifically from Luke's point of view, we only see things as he sees them. Notice that we don't hear anyone griping about what a whiny brat Luke is in ANH. People who help Luke and his friends are good guys; people who try to set them back are bad guys. The changing way Lando is portrayed illustrates this well.
  20. MeBeJedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2002
    star 6
    I thought these events were told from the droids' point of view? ;)
  21. Dark Lady Mara Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 19, 1999
    star 7
    No - the droids are just the focus of destiny's efforts. ;)

    (The thread is really dead if we've been reduced to discussing this, isn't it? :D )
  22. MeBeJedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2002
    star 6
    [face_laugh]

    Droids with destinies. I didn't think that was their lot in life. ;)

    Next, they'll start calling themselves deities. :p
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